I am not an overly anxious person. I do tend to worry, but I’m not prone to anxiety attacks or being paralyzed by fear.
However, this coronavirus has made me freak out a little bit. So I am turning to God’s word to help guide my thoughts and actions.
I started in Philippians 4:6-7 and it states, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Ok, let’s unpack that. Don’t be anxious about anything. Don’t be afraid, apprehensive, concerned, distressed, fearful, nervous, scared or uptight about anything. I am definitely guilty of being anxious when I look at all the synonyms for it.
I learned a long time ago, I can’t control everything. Honestly I can’t control very much at all. I’ve learned to let go of A LOT in my own life, personal and business alike. But, I’ve also never been faced by a global pandemic. Should this change what I’ve learned up to this point? Should the facts of coronavirus impact or lessen my faith? No.
But, if I shouldn’t be anxious or think about all of the reports on what coronavirus is doing to our nation, what am I supposed to think about?
Paul continues in Philippians in verse 8 and says, “Finally, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.”
Easier said than done right? I decided to think about what is actually lovely, and not just things like the ocean or pretty flowers, what does God say is lovely? What has God done? What has God told us about what HE thinks of us? If the media is filing our feed and our minds with pandemic, and I agree that’s what we have on our hands, how can I combat the fear? The only thing I know is capable of combating fear is God’s word, and here’s what it says.
Jeremiah 29:11 God knows the plans he has for us, plans to prosper and not harm us, plan to give us a hope and a future.
Psalm 119: 89-92 God’s word is eternal, it stands firm in the Heavens. This set of verses reminds me that no matter what, God lasts, his word lasts and coronavirus can not overtake what is true.
Matthew 10:29-31 Jesus talks about how God takes care of even the sparrows and we are more valuable than them! So do not fear.
Joshua 1:9 My man Joshua is a total gangster. If you have not read Joshua go read it. God commands him over and over to be strong and courageous. “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” If the coronavirus comes to my house, I will not be afraid, discouraged or anxious because The Lord is with me wherever I go.
Can you imagine if we all took this mindset? Yes, adhere to the CDC guidelines, stay home, practice social distancing, but do not be afraid or discouraged. It’s easy to become afraid and discouraged as soon as you open up the news app on your phone, or turn on the TV or look online. Yes this virus is very real, but like Paul said in Philippians, think about whatever is lovely, admirable and noble. Where do I find these thoughts? In God’s word, and his word is eternal, it has stood the test of time.
Deuteronomy 31:8 “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” I’m seeing a theme here.
Romans 8:38-39 Nothing can separate us from God. Add coronavirus to this set of verses and stand confident.
John 3:16 I’m certain we all know this verse, Tim Tebow also made it pretty famous.
If you are struggling through this worldwide pandemic, know that God loves you and finds you extremely valuable.
Genesis 1:27 God created you in his image.
Psalm 139:13-16 God knit you together. Now THAT is a lovely thought. He knows all your days before even one came to be. Honestly all of Psalm 139 is lovely, you should read it. It is right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and you should think about such things. It says God’s thoughts about us outnumber the grains of sand. Wow.
John 14:18 God will not leave us as orphans, he will come to us. It’s in times like this that further solidifies my knowledge that we can count on God; He is the only one who can save us, rescue us and comfort us.
John 10:29 Nothing can snatch us out of God’s hands. Not even the coronavirus.
Philippians 1:21 But, if the coronavirus does come to our house, if someone I love does succumb to it, this verse epitomizes the Christian life. To live is Christ, and to die is gain. For those of us who know Jesus, death means eternal life in Heaven, and there’s no greater gain than that.
I know this blog is like a sermon, but the other day I needed to remind myself of what is true and I wrote all of these things down as a reminder. Maybe you or someone you know needs a reminder like I did.
I heard the other day that the word remember is in the Bible more than the word trust. So I looked it up, remember is mentioned 231 times and trust is mentioned 170. And I think that’s because when we remember what God has already done, who he’s proven himself to be, in times of war, in times of famine, in times of uncertainty…if we remember, how he’s rescued those who follow and trust in him then we can know he will do the same for us. We can trust God, and trusting God is part of the building blocks of faith.
2 Corinthians 4:18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
I can see the news of coronavirus, but this virus is temporary, it is not eternal.
So what now?
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord guys. Don’t lean on your own understanding.
Take this time of social distancing and lean into the one who can give you peace that surpasses your anxiety, your fear, your understanding. Rely on the one who has proven that He is reliable and trustworthy. God has been there for every generation, and He’s here for ours too. Lean into Him.